Leading Democrat Engel says warnings to end Palestinian funding over terror are real
Eliot Engel, the ranking Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, has warned that Palestinians really do risk losing American funding if they do not end terrorism and incitement
Eliot Engel, the veteran Democratic Congressman from New York, and the ranking Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, has re-issued and underlined a stark warning that the Palestinian Authority must end incitement, and clearly condemn terrorism, or risk losing hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. aid.
Speaking in Berlin on Sunday to a group of parliamentarians at an Israel Allies European Summit, Congressman Engel said Palestinians must "put down knives and guns and come back to the negotiating table... Palestinians have to understand...no-one is going to reward terrorism".
He warned the Palestinian leadership that the prospect of ending funding, raised in a letter to Mahmoud Abbas last month signed by 369 members of Congress (nearly 85 percent of all representatives), was not mere rhetoric.
"If you don't [end incitement and terror] we have no obligation to continue funding you...it's not something anyone wants to do...[but] at some point there has to be some kind of responsibility [from the Palestinian leadership], some kind of adulthood."
In October, it was reported that the State Department was cutting aid to the Palestinians by $80 million -- from $370 million to $290 million -- in an apparent warning sign of what could come if incitement continues.
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